Tuesday, 24 January 2012: 1:30 PM
Investigating the Structure of Long Lake-Axis-Parallel Lake-Effect Snow Bands with a Doppler on Wheels
Room 239 (New Orleans Convention Center )
In the winter of 2010-11 a research team comprised of scientists and students from the State University of New York at Oswego, University of Illinois and the Center for Severe Weather Research gathered on the shore of Lake Ontario to take a fine scale look at Long Lake-Axis-Parallel (LLAP) snow bands. The team made a number of remote and in-situ measurements which included the use of a dual-polarimetric X-band (2.5-4 cm) mobile Doppler radar, instrumented probe vehicle, mobile rawinsonde launch platform, Formvar slides (for hydrometeor preservation and typing) as well as photographic and conventional observation methods. The results of this research suggest that LLAP snow bands are far more dynamic and turbulent than their near laminar background synoptic flow. In fact, many of the features exhibited by the LLAP bands in this study closely resemble the scaled down structure of that found within deep moist convective storms. These features include meso/misocyclones, bounded weak echo regions, outflow boundaries, anvil tops and lightning. It is believed that some of these features which are too small to resolve with operational radar and current numerical modeling, may play a role in LLAP snow band placement and intensity, areas in which numerical models traditionally have difficulty. It is believed that if we can better understand the processes with which the observed features occur, we can better understand the dynamics of these storms which may lead to better modeling and forecasting of these extreme weather events.